After receiving around 200+ texts, Facebook personal messages and greetings on my timeline on my 39th birthday, I thought of writing something as a way of thanking all of them. I’m sharing them with you here. 😉

1. Courage – It is acting out despite having fears. It’s getting out of your comfort zone because nothing great grows within it. The courage to start small and to take big risks builds muscles to the skeletal system of your dreams. It is courage that makes your vision come to pass.

2. Dreams – Dreams are only good when you’re awake and working to make them happen. Dreaming while being lazy and not doing anything about it won’ get you anywhere. Expressing your dreams through your life and the way you work attracts the right people into your path, helping you make your dreams come true. Dreaming keeps you believing until it happens.

3. Happiness – Take charge of your happiness because hardly anyone will ever make you truly and fully happy. Though you could be happy too even while you’re alone, happiness is best when it’s shared. I realize that when you make people happy by serving them or helping them achieve their dreams, your happiness multiplies and it overflows to many others. Enjoy life when you can because life is short. You’ll never know when it’s your time to go.

4. Family – Family makes life worth living. At the end of one’s life, when you’re blessed with a chance to say goodbye to the people you love, it is these folks whom you’d want to be with until your last breath. Live to serve them and love them because no one else will back you up when the going gets tough, they’ll be there for you through hell and high water.

5. Friendship – In the absence of your family, friends will make your difficult life a more bearable and a bit more fun. Being with friends could make your life more interesting and fill it with meaning. Time will test who your real lifelong friends are because some friends are just there either for a reason or a season. I’m blessed knowing I have my precious few.

6. Faith – I may no longer be alive today without my faith. I have been to oh so many rough patches that I wouldn’t have been able to endure if I’m not intentionally growing my faith every day. My faith in God has helped me believe that there’s a silver lining in every version of long dark tunnel I’ve ever been to. I am grateful to God who makes all things beautiful in His time.

7. Success – Through the years, I’ve learned to stop comparing myself with others. I have grown to strive only to become better than I was before. My version of success will always be different from that of others because I was born with a different family, with a completely different set of circumstances that challenged me and molded me to become who I am today.

8. Contentment – I don’t see contentment as a plain sailing journey. I see it in a form of peaks and valleys. There would be seasons when I have it innately, but there would be days when I need to fight for it. There’s a good kind of discontentment and it’s not always bad. When your discontentment stretches you to become the best version of yourself, not only for your own fulfillment but to become a blessing for others, contentment will surprise you along the way.

9. Love – Dwight L. Moody said it best, “Faith makes all things possible while love makes all things easy.” And the only way to truly love people is to know that one day, they too will go away, either by choosing their own path or by death. So I do my best to show my love to people I have in my life right now. To let them know I value and appreciate them as often as I could. Love begets love. If you behave lovingly towards other people, they too will behave lovingly to you.

Question: How about you? What’s one jewel of wisdom that you live by?

Adrian is a professional Events Host, Writer, Teacher, and Change Catalyst. He's a world-class emcee creating fun, memorable, and meaningful events. As a change catalyst, his mission is to inspire personal development so people could have better lives with brighter future, against all odds. An IELTS- and TESOL-certified English Trainer, he's also a prolific Tagalog Tutor.